CIP Berkshire offers a unique curriculum track focused on creative and educational development in the visual and performing arts fields for young adults with Asperger’s, Autism, ADHD, and other Learning Differences.
Students have the option of participating in the Visual and Performing Arts Program while enrolled in CIP Berkshire’s comprehensive full-year program in Lee, Massachusetts.
Goals of the Program
- Provide an outlet for creative interests and expression
- Practical skill building and experience through the arts
- Integration of CIP’s core curriculum
- Gainful experience in the creative visual and performing arts fields
Integration with the Berkshire Visual & Performing Arts Center
The Good Purpose Gallery and Spectrum Playhouse are professional venues that exist to offer students real-life training, experience and integration with the community. Both venues host professional artists and events on a regular basis throughout the year. Students utilize the space for events such as plays, performances, art exhibits and more. CIP students interact with and receive instruction from professionals working in the field. In addition, CIP’s Joyous Studios is an artist in residence training program and offers studio space for the visual arts.
CIP Berkshire’s Visual and Performing Arts Program offers small group classes aimed at training and educating students for a range of opportunities in creative arts fields. Students build upon the basics such as art and theater history and portfolios to more technical classes such as stage design, costuming, and independent studies. Students can also pursue internships and jobs in a related field, gaining employment skills and experience and building their portfolios and resumes. In addition, students will receive career-based classes from the C-STEP program, supporting their internships and jobs.
Art on the Go
In this workshop, offered during the summer session, students move outside of the classroom and find opportunities for artistic expression throughout Berkshire County. While creating on the go, students develop executive function skills as well as important soft skills such as flexibility and working within a time constraint.
In this course, students work on developing story-telling and fine motor skills through the creation of their own children’s story. In a group setting, students discuss elements of writing and illustration while independently working on their personal project.
Students engage in various theatrical based activities with a goal of presenting student showcases performed at the Spectrum Playhouse for the public. Students work on strengthening sensory, executive functioning and social thinking skills through interactive work on the stage.
This summer workshop focuses on how to develop and create a short film – on both sides of the camera! Discussions and demonstrations will focus on technical aspects of film making as well as performance.
Intro to Visual and Performing Arts
A broad look at the world of Visual and Performing Arts, students in this workshop examine the world of art and theatre through history, elements of design, and art appreciation as well as career based looks at employment in the creative arts world.
This summer workshop offers students a chance to take social thinking skills to a new level with the creation of masks based on emotional expression.
Movement & Dance
Students focus on basic ballet and tap skills with a goal of performance at the Spectrum Playhouse. Working with a local professional dancer, students are exposed to a variety of stretches, warm-ups, and exercises to help develop fine motor skills and stage presence.
The Berkshire Center’s longest running creative arts offering is specially geared towards students on the Spectrum. Using voice and motion, students learn about the ‘hidden curriculum’ of communication with others. Each semester, students are guided through a new performance choice that is then taken out into the community and performed for local venues.
Studio Art Techniques
In this workshop, students are exposed to various fine art techniques such as drawing, painting, and sculpture while developing critical thinking skills through art appreciation. Work produced in class is considered for the annual National Student Art Show at the Good Purpose Art Gallery.
Integration with CIP’s Core Curriculum
CIP’s comprehensive curriculum, offered at different levels of support, offers individualized social, academic, career, and life skills instruction. These core services tie-in directly with the Berkshire Visual & Performing Arts Program services, strengthening core competencies such as social skills, executive functioning, health and wellness, career supports and more. CIP’s core curriculum serves as the foundation for success and in leading happy and productive lives thereafter.
Cultural Venues in the Berkshires
The Berkshires is located in Western Massachusetts and is approximately 150 miles away from Boston and New York City. Home to many venues including Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Tanglewood and the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Shakespeare & Company, students have the opportunity to participate in as well as enjoy the arts in a safe a comfortable environment. Living in the Berkshires offers real opportunities for experience at a number of nationally recognized cultural arts venues.